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Fashion brands' initiatives for the Venice Biennale

Fashion and art activate convesations from Valentino, sponsor of the Italian Pavilion, to the historic newsstands renovated by Louis Vuitton

Fashion brands' initiatives for the Venice Biennale Fashion and art activate convesations from Valentino, sponsor of the Italian Pavilion, to the historic newsstands renovated by Louis Vuitton

From 23 April to 27 November 2022 the 59th International Art Exhibition of Venice will enliven the cultural offer of the lagoon city thanks to 1433 works, the result of the work of 213 artists from 58 different countries. The theme of the edition curated by Cecilia Alemani is The Milk of Dreams, a reference to Leonora Carrington's book of fairy tales of the same name. As in the British surrealist artist's text, in this Biennale the imagination becomes a sort of magic wand capable of giving life to transformations, worlds and fantastic creatures from which to reflect on three macro concepts: the representation of bodies and their metamorphoses, the relationship between individuals and technologies, and the links between bodies and the Earth. These are themes often investigated by fashion and designers who, as never before in the new edition of the Biennale, have placed themselves at the service of art, reinforcing an indissoluble relationship made up of inspiration, collaboration and patronage.   

From Valentino to Burberry, from Dior to Louis Vuitton, there are many brands that have taken the field, here are the most interesting initiatives that we will see in these Venetian weeks dedicated to art.   



With an investment of 1.4 million euros, Valentino is the main sponsor of the Italian Pavilion curated by Eugenio Viola which, for the first time in the history of the event, features a unique artist: Gian Maria Tosatti. His project, entitled Storia della notte e destino delle comete (History of the night and the destiny of comets), is a sort of statement on contemporaneity, "a large environmental installation that offers an evocative vision of the current state of humanity and its prospects, with a proactive and optimistic outlook". This partnership strengthens the bond between the Maison and Venice, which Pierpaolo Piccioli defines as a unique place that exudes vibrations about art, theatre, music, architecture, cinema and everything that has to do with creativitỳ. It is no coincidence, in fact, that the designer chose the city as the location for the Valentino DesAteliers haute couture show in July 2021.



Burberry, in collaboration with the British Council, is supporting the British Pavilion which features Sonia Boyce's Feeling Her Way. The artist, known for her highly innovative and experimental approach, presents an ambitious video installation centred on the vocal performances of five black British musicians: @errollyn9552@tanitatikaramofficialJacqui Dankworth@poppyajudha @SofiaJernberg. Visitors to the exhibition find themselves inside a kind of labyrinth of sounds and visions, in which a cappella singing, installations and dynamic images come together.  



Art, especially female art, is at the heart of Maria Grazia Chiuri's work at Dior. The French brand, which is one of the backers of the Biennale 2022, is organizing a gala dinner at the Teatro La Fenice to raise funds that will be used to preserve and protect Venice's artistic and cultural heritage, to contribute to the restoration of the Galleria Giorgio Franchetti at the Ca' d'Oro museum, and also for Ukrainian refugees in Italy. Chiuri and Dior also designed the uniforms for the staff of the Gallerie dell'Accademia in Venice.



Always present in the lagoon with its headquarters at Ca' Corner della Regina, Fondazione Prada inaugurated Human Brains: It Begins with an Idea, the third chapter of a project dedicated to neuroscience that began in 2018. The exhibition curated by Udo Kittelmann in collaboration with Taryn Simon explores the human brain and seeks to understand the complexity of its functions and its centrality in human history.


Louis Vuitton

On the occasion of the Biennale, Louis Vuitton is a patron of three projects. In addition to financing, like Dior, the restoration of the Galleria Giorgio Franchetti in the Ca' d'Oro museum, it brought to Venice the international and itinerant project of the Librairie Éphémère, renovating eight of the city's historic newsstands which for the occasion will be decorated with the travel books that the French brand has been publishing for decades. In addition, at the Espace Louis Vuitton, she will set up the installation, Apollo, by Katharina Grosse. The German artist, known for her ability to invade spaces with color, narrates her new work which has as its focus a dark space where the artist's hands are printed on metal mesh "the image is chosen from a series of photographs showing situations or actions, linked in one way or another to my painting. [...] It oscillates between surface, texture, image and object, order and disorder, destruction and creation, tension and release, forced and free movement".


Bottega Veneta

Bottega Veneta has collaborated with Palazzo Grassi Punta della Dogana Pinault Collection to support Dancing Studies, an exclusive series of performances by internationally renowned choreographers William Forsythe, Lenio Kaklea, Ralph Lemon, and Pam Tanowitz, inspired by the exhibition Bruce Nauman: Contrapposto Studies, on view through November at Punta Della Dogana. The subject? Works that explore the Contrapposto pose, a term from classical art that refers to a contorted standing figure, with the upper and lower body turned in opposite ways, in search of balance. Matthieu Blazy personally designed the costumes for the performances curated by Kaklea and Tanowitz. In addition, the creative director chose Venice to launch his first campaign for Bottega Veneta, with images shot by Senegalese photographer Malick Bodian emblazoned on the apse of the Church of San Geremia.



Swatch, a long-standing main partner of the event, returns to the Lagoon with two projects: Swatch Faces, an exhibition of works by five artists from the Swatch Art Peace Hotel in the Sale d'Armi dell'Arsenale, and The Description of The World, a site-specific installation in the Giardini by Thai artist Navin Rawanchaikul. His is a reflection on the theme of community that passes through the travels of Marco Polo and the experiences of some migrants. The result is a mega diorama measuring 15 meters by 4.